Tuesday, April 17, 2018

I Can’t Ask Friends and Family to Fund Our Adoption. Can I?

The following is taken from the Lifesong blog.
Published 3/9/2018 


Asking for money for any reason is hard. Asking for money to fund an adoption is no easier. But is it wrong?


Here are 3 questions to consider–

1. Why are you asking for financial support?

Adoption is expensive, but expense–alone–isn’t always enough of a reason to ask other people for help.
Many adopting families ask for help because the amount of money required in a short timeline far exceeds their ability to pay. For example, according to Adoptive Families Magazine, the average fees for a domestic adoption in the United States are $39,966. Many adoption agencies require a bulk of that money up front to handle application, homestudy, and agency fees, etc. While coming up with $39,966 over several years may be possible, coming up with it in a matter of months may be another story altogether. If God has clearly led your family to adopt, He may clearly lead you to humble yourself and ask for help.
Note to adopting families: If God has called you to adopt and you are asking friends and family to contribute financially, take the time to explain why the financial help is vital. Be willing to share God’s heart for the fatherless and your specific call to adopt. If it applies to you, be clear that adoption is overwhelmingly expensive, and most candidates for adopting don’t have access to the required fees in the required timeline.

2. How are you asking for financial support?

The how in this case is as important as the why.
Just as God has prompted you to adopt, so, too, He will prompt the right people to support your adoption. In many ways, this is a fantastic way for friends and family to participate in caring for fatherless children whether or not God has called them to adopt. But still, we must ask correctly. Make the need known, but be careful not to over-request. Host as few fundraisers as possible with the lowest possible overhead cost so that every dollar goes as far as possible. If someone gives generously to your adoption, take that person off of future fundraising requests. He or she now knows you are adopting and will give again if God directs.
Note to adopting families: Begin by making the need known to your closest friends and family. Writing a personal letter has proven to be very effective in this regard. Be sure to celebrate every gift–no matter the size–through prayers of praise and notes of gratitude. Also, very often, your inner circle will be happy to give generously without the need to buy t-shirts or jewelry.
Do you want to help your friends’ and families’ gifts go further? Consider applying for a matching grant or fundraising support through Lifesong. We even have a free crowdfunding tool for our approved families to use!

3. What are you contributing financially to your adoption?

Be certain when asking others to contribute to your adoption that you are contributing all you can. While your life should not end while you wait to adopt your child, enjoying expensive dinners out or posting photos of extraordinary vacations while asking people to help with your adoption may send the wrong message. If God has called you to adopt, He may be calling you to sacrifice immediate luxuries … and that’s OK. You won’t regret sacrificial obedience to God.
Bottom line: Asking friends and family to help isn’t wrong if it’s done in the right way for the right reasons. And most importantly?–Where God leads, God provides.

And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that always having all sufficiency in everything, you may have an abundance for every good deed.
–2 Corinthians 9:8

Money should never be the reason children don’t have families.

Monday, April 9, 2018

Safe Families Volunteer Training at Willow Creek!

Are you ready to step out onto the water and take a leap of faith? Looking for a way to help the kids and families who are struggling? We challenge you to DO SOMETHING.
Safe Families for Children is a movement fueled by compassion to keep children safe and families intact. We rely upon host families, and a network of support, to open their arms, their hearts, and their homes.
Safe Families Volunteer Training
Saturday, May 5th, 2018
Willow Creek Community Church, Room B206
67 E. Algonquin Road, So. Barrington, IL


This event is designed to equip you to welcome a child into your home (Host Family) or support a host or placing parent (Family Friend) and move you through the training process efficiently. The live Comprehensive Training Session includes everything you need to become a certified Safe Family Volunteer—all in one place. 
  • Start or submit your application
  • Get fingerprints taken for the background check
  • Complete your training hours
  • Meet like-minded families who will support you
The training will be in two parts.  The first 2 1/2 hours will be for all volunteers. The second 1 1/2  hours will be for Host Families.  So, anyone interested in being a Family Friend only needs to stay for the first part.  Host Families need to stay for the whole training.
Doors open at 8:30 AM for those who need to start an application, schedule a home study, start a background check, or ask one-on-one questions.  The training session begins at 9:00 AM sharp!
A light breakfast and lunch is included.

Email us at safefamilies@willowcreek.org with questions,

Hope to see you there!

Thursday, April 5, 2018

Adoption, Foster Care, Safe Families for Children Open House!

Adoption, Foster Care, Safe Families for Children
Open House!

Wednesday, April 11th
7:30 - 8:45
Willow Creek Community Church
Room F280 (Hospitality Room)

Come learn about adoption, foster care, and Safe Families for Children and learn how you can get involved in these growing ministries at Willow Creek.

Interested in serving kids in foster care?  Representatives from C.A.S.A. (Court Appointed Special Advocates), Royal Family Kids Camp, and Teen Reach Adventure Camp will be on hand to show you ways you can get involved.

No registration necessary.  Questions? Email afs@willowcreek.org

Thursday, March 1, 2018

IL Adoption Law

Public Act 96-0895, which became effective May 21, 2010, makes it possible for an adult adoptee or surrendered person born in Illinois, who is 21 years or older, to request a non-certified copy of his or her original birth. This act also allows birth parents of adopted or surrendered persons born on or after January 1, 1946, to specify their wishes with regard to contact and to the release of their identifying information.

Public Act 98-0704, which became effective January 1, 2015, makes it possible for a birth mother or birth father of an adult adopted person born in Illinois to request a non-certified copy of the original birth record as it was filed at the time of the birth.  

You can find more information about the Illinois state adoption law HERE.

Thursday, February 15, 2018

When Church is a Challenge for Kids

When life is a struggle, Believers want and NEED church. We desire fellowship with others, corporate worship, and being led through Scripture for a nugget of God’s peace that passes all understanding. Unfortunately for many foster and adoptive parents, the idea of going to church may also bring up feelings of anxiety.
  • Should I try to have my child attend Sunday School or will the separation be too much for them?
  • Will people think that my kids are “out of control” because they struggle to self-regulate?
  • Is it worth trying to actually get my kids to church?
  • Will I be called out of service repeatedly if my child experiences a meltdown?
  • Should I take my child even though he might be so overstimulated that it will take the whole rest of the day to help him regulate?
  • Read more about foster/adoptive families’ experiences, here's a great place to start.

At Project 1.27, part of our mission is to help equip churches to support foster and adoptive families. As you think about your church, or the church your foster/adoptive family attends, consider the church culture and how it responds to children from hard places and the parents who care for them. Does the church leadership prioritize foster and adoptive ministries? Do the children’s programs seek to accommodate a child from hard places through extra training and understanding? Are there opportunities to engage the church congregation to think more about serving kids in foster care or those who have been adopted?

How can I help my church become more foster and adoptive friendly?
  • Investigate your church culture through asking foster/adoptive families about their experience in church.
  • Explore additional resources or ministries your church could offer to support foster/adoptive families.
  • Schedule a time to talk with someone in leadership at your church about what you have learned and the need that exists at your church.
  • Contact Project 1.27’s new Family Care Team Manager, Marilyn Robinson (mrobinson@project127.com), if your church leadership is interested in developing more strategic ways to support foster and adoptive families.

Saturday, February 3, 2018

Safe Families Sunday LIVE!

 Join others from the Safe Families for Children community 
LIVE on February 11th. 
They will be broadcasting Facebook Live at 6:00pm (CST).  
To participate, go to www.facebook.com/SFFCNational.

Thursday, February 1, 2018

Empowered to Connect Conference!

This year, we have the awesome opportunity to attend the 
Empowered To Connect Conference LIVE in the Chicago area!

Geared toward foster & adoptive families, and applicable for potential adoptive or foster parents, and professionals or ministry leaders serving children. 
Learn an evidence-based, trauma-informed approach from global leaders on caring for children from "hard places". Learn how to promote healing, foster connection, and correct your children with methods that work. 

Friday, April 13th
& Saturday, April 14th
Harvest New Beginnings 

5315 Douglas Road
Oswego, IL 60543
  • Experience practical teaching in a safe and supportive community!
  • Each adoptive and foster parent will receive a certificate of attendance that can be turned into their agency & possibly counted towards training credits.
This conference, presented by Show Hope in partnership with the Karyn Purvis Institute of Child Development at TCU and Empowered To Connect, is a two-day event that equips families, churches, and professionals to better serve children impacted by adoption and foster care.
We strongly recommend attending with your spouse! It's beneficial for you to be on the same page. We believe this conference is worth taking a day off work if you need to. What you will learn is invaluable!

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Silver Birch Ranch Adoptive Family Retreat!

The Adoption Family Retreat at Silver Birch Ranch is a time to encourage and strengthen your family in many ways. Hear excellent Biblical teaching from speakers who share your life situation. Enjoy networking with other families, and receive counsel and advice from professionals in the field. Horseback riding, ziplines, the climbing wall, tubing hills, broomball, cross-country ski trails, and a warm fireplace are a sampling of some of the activities you can enjoy with your family. This weekend is suited for families who have adopted, are in the process of adopting, or who are investigating adoption. Come join us as we encourage each other. 

Visit www.silverbirchranch.org for more information.

Sunday, January 14, 2018

Safe Families for Children Fundraiser at Chicago Auto Show!

LYDIA Home and Safe Families for Children is proud to invite you to First Look for Charity on February 9th.  This black-tie affair enables participants to behold the nation’s largest auto show in grandeur, the evening before the show opens to the public, and indulge in a variety of gourmet hors d’oeuvres, live music and a new vehicle giveaway.

Here's the best part: For each ticket you buy, Lydia Home and Safe Families for Children receives a tax deductible donation of $223. These funds come directly to us for programs helping children and families in crisis. It’s an amazing opportunity to enjoy a unique experience and help hurting people at the same time.

We need your help!
Please purchase your tickets right away and share this event with your friends and family. If you’re not able to attend, please consider giving a gift to support the children we serve.
Buy your tickets now!